This week's indicator is 1,401 GW, which is the installed capacity of coal power plants planned globally as of July 2012, according to the World Research Institute. More than three-quarters of planned coal power capacity is located in China or India.
This week's indicator is $40 billion, which is the estimated cost for New York utility ConEd to bury all of its power lines. To recover the cost of this investment, rates for ConEd customers would need to triple for at least a decade.
This week’s indicator is 66 percent, which is the percentage of companies with a publicly available climate and energy strategy, according to the latest Climate Counts report. That’s up from 25 percent of companies evaluated in 2007. The report evaluated 145 large companies in 16 industry sectors.
This week's indicator is 3 percent, which was the increase in global carbon emissions in 2011 according to a new study published Sunday. The study's authors predict another 2.6 percent jump in emissions in 2012. Given these developments, scientists say we are unlikely to meet the United Nations goal of limiting global temperature rise to less than 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit.
While climate legislation is stalled in Congress, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has pushed forward regulations of pollutants besides carbon dioxide that will drive progress toward cleaner power generation fleets and cleaner air. The major new regulations include Utility MACT (also known as the Mercury and Air Toxics Standards (Mg), the Cross-State Air Pollution Rule (SO2/NOx), 316B of the Clean Water Act (H20), and the Coal Combustion Residuals regulation (coal ash). States, utilities, and legislators have shown both support and opposition in the face of these proposed regulations. Over the last year, there have been many movements to limit the EPA’s power to enforce these standards, most recently 25 states opposing Utility MACT, including the Kansas and Texas lawsuits, Senators Hoeven and Conrad’s legislation, and the FERC Commissioner stating the EPA pace is “too aggressive.” On the other hand, multiple states recently filed motions in support of the EPA, making now a good time to examine some key points and evaluate the synergistic effect of all the regulations.
(co-authored with Maggie Crowley, Analyst)
In the same way that LEED has transformed architectural design to improve energy efficiency and reduce greenhouse gas emissions, clean construction is emerging as the next big thing to revolutionize the building industry.
The Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) has launched its water report and there is a good overview on GreenBiz, featuring GreenOrder alumni Marcus Norton, who was instrumental to development of the project:
CDP has turned its attention to water, surveying 302 companies in the FTSE Global Equity Index Series on behalf of 137 institutional investors. About half responded, revealing the vast majority have water policies, strategies, and performance targets in place. Sixty-two percent view water as a business opportunity, and an even greater number recognize its inherent linkage to energy.
"We see corporations using their imagination and looking at these challenges as opportunities for growth," said Marcus Norton, head of CDP Water Disclosure. "From some of the feedback from companies, I think it's really a reflection that companies have been through this with carbon."